What I Hate About Human Resources


I was impressed with HR Wench’s super-accurate list titled, “Components of HR that I Hate.

HR Wench hits the big ones that suck — including safety, employee time off policies, and stupid managers. The list totally rocks. (I would be screaming amen & hallelujah if I were a member of a gospel choir.)

I’m feeling inspired. Here are some things that I really hate about Human Resources.

1. Hyper-competitive women who block the forward progress of my career.

If Human Resources were football, these women would be called for pass interference. The practice of HR suffers from too many women (usually boomers) who lead our departments but don’t care enough about the practice of Human Resources to mentor younger women. These hyper-competitive women love trendy programs that look good on paper & generate work for their departments (e.g., “Let’s start a diversity program! Out of nowhere!”); however, the results of these trendy initiatives are often negligible. There is no link between the activity and business productivity.

I have a message for these older women who lead so many HR departments: you can’t retire soon enough.

2. Male executives who think I work in HR because I want to find a husband.

Here’s my message to all the guys who misconstrue my career choice: I don’t work in Human Resources because I need a husband. I work in Human Resources because I’m bad at math & science. Let’s just be honest, anyway — you’re not husband material.

3. Difficult employees who think that HR should act as their advocates.

I advocate for you to find a new job.

4. The assumption that I work in Human Resources because I’m good with people.

I may seem bubbly and sweet, but I’m hardly a people person. I don’t have any keen insights into why some people are dumber than others, and the only thing I can offer is a common sense approach to managing people. Unfortunately, I can’t offer much common sense unless you bring me a donut.

5. The belief that Human Resources professionals have excellent conflict-resolution skills.

I’m no more qualified to solve your problems than you are. If I had better conflict-resolution skills, I would be on better terms with 99% of my family. Instead, I offer conflict-encouragement. If you come to my office and tell me your problems, I will encourage you to confront the person who is causing you trouble. It’s not because I want you to resolve your problems, but rather, I want you to leave me alone so I can get back to Zappos.

Other HR readers — what did I miss?

Previous post:

Next post: